E Racing

Electric the only way out? ADAC Head of Motorsport Voss: "Don't think hybrid cars will come to the DTM"

Tobias Wirtz

Tobias Wirtz

Since its sale to the ADAC, things have been very quiet around the "DTM Electric" project - a racing concept developed under the auspices of the previous DTM owner ITR, which was to have been held with over 700 kW electric touring cars as part of the DTM supporting programme. However, an electric DTM is not yet completely off the table.

The ADAC is also aware of the fact that it needs to position itself more sustainably in order to remain attractive to sponsors in the future. "Refinancing and finding sponsors for a series with combustion-powered cars is becoming more difficult from year to year," said ADAC Head of Motorsport Thomas Voss at Motorsport.com.

"The first question that potential sponsors ask us is: 'What is the DTM doing in terms of sustainability and what are the proposals for the future?' And we have to develop something. And at some point, the question arises as to whether we also need to change the cars," he continues.

The manufacturers are interested in an electric DTM, but not with standardised drive systems, as planned for the "DTM Electric", but as part of in-house developments in the field of technology. Consequently, the ADAC is working behind the scenes to concretise this idea.

"The future of road cars in Germany is battery electric"

"To attract the car manufacturers, you should have a series and a car that is developed by the manufacturer," he continues. "That's what the DTM stands for and what is required of us. We need to start developing something now for 2028 or 2030. And that's exactly what we're doing right now."

He believes that a switch to hybrid drives, such as those that have been used in Formula 1 and the World Endurance Championship (WEC) for several years, is unlikely, particularly due to the costs and developments in the area of road vehicles.

"The German manufacturers in particular tell us with regard to hybrids: 'We have LMDh cars, they are far too expensive for a national series' and would rather stick with GT3. The future for road cars in Germany is battery electric, hybrid cars only for a period of maybe five or seven years. So I don't think hybrid cars will come to the DTM."

Switching to 100 per cent e-fuels "will be the first step"

However, Voss does not see the combustion engine dying out, at least if they can be powered by e-fuels. That is also the short-term plan for the DTM, he reveals. Shell currently provides fuel for the GT3 cars in the DTM, 50 per cent of which is obtained from renewable raw materials. "I hope that we can make the switch (to 100 per cent) by 2025. That will be the first step."

However, he also throws a parallel concept of electric drives and combustion engines with e-fuels into the mix, as the WRX has announced for this year. "I don't think cars with internal combustion engines will stop and then the electric car will come. There is enough room for both."

Even after the purchase by the ADAC, the DTM has so far failed to take any major measures with regard to sustainability. In the "Sustainable Championship Index" by Enovation Consulting, where 106 racing series worldwide were analysed in terms of their sustainability, the DTM was one of the bottom performers in the lowest category a few weeks ago.

Go back


Add a comment

Please calculate 1 plus 5.